So you finally decided to take the plunge and get engaged? Congratulations! Now comes the fun part; planning your big day!
Did you know that a quarter of a million couples tied the knot in California last year and the average cost of a wedding in California is $35,274?
So, what can you get for your money? Well, if you happen to live in Southern California, there are so many incredible venues to choose from. With landscapes ranging from the ocean to the mountains and everything in between, you’re sure to find the ideal spot for you!
Here is a list of the best wedding venues in Southern California!
Bel-Air Bay Club – Pacific Palisades
California dreaming of a luxurious coastal event? We have the perfect wedding venue for you! The Bel-Air Bay Club is a luxurious property located on a cliff overlooking the ocean.
This 1920s Mediterranean-style mansion exudes Southern California style and class with lush landscaping, palm trees, and the calming sounds of the waves.
Although the price tag on the Bel-Air Bay Club is a bit higher than some of the other outdoor California wedding venues, if you can afford it, this beautiful setting is paradise.
There is a huge lawn on a bluff for your wedding ceremony and several outdoor and indoor spaces for cocktails and your reception.
The outdoor patio has a lighted fountain, a grand fireplace, and of course, ocean breezes. Or maybe take your dinner indoors to the dining room with vaulted ceilings and wrought iron chandeliers.
Just picture the amazing photos your wedding photographer will capture with the sun setting behind you and your loved one.
Bonus: When you rent the Bel-Air Bay Club you have access to the entire estate. There are also nine guest suites on-site that can house your wedding party the night before your big day. How fun!
Typical Cost: Starts at $15,000.
Capacity: Up to 275 seated guests.
Shady Brook Farmhouse – Fallbrook
With micro weddings trending this year, we had to include a small venue on our list!
Shady Brook Farmhouse is one of the classiest properties in the San Diego area for your intimate wedding. Skip the courthouse elopement and come to Shady Brook with your closest friends where nearly every detail is taken care of for you.
The ceremony site is under a white wooden arbor surrounded by forest and lush gardens, and after you say your vows, enjoy cocktails and food in a beautiful private meadow.
Accommodations, a rehearsal and rehearsal dinner, breakfast on your wedding day, lunch and dinner, a wedding planner and ceremony officiant, flower bouquets, a wedding cake, and much more, are all included in the all-inclusive package! Can you say elegant and easy?
Bonus: Included in your package at Shady Brook Farmhouse is a two-night stay on the property for up to six people.
Typical Cost: Starts at $9,800.
Capacity: Up to 20 seated guests.
Milagro Winery – Ramona
This list just wouldn’t be complete without a winery wedding venue, and Milagro Winery is one of the most unique there is!
Located right outside of San Diego, Milagro Winery has rolling hills with vineyards, meandering meadows, and other magnificent landscaping.
There are four sites on the property to choose from:
The Ceremony Lawn has multiple spaces to hold your ceremony under towering oak trees, and the Reception Patio is a large space with twinkling lights where you can dine and dance the night away.
The Wine Cave can be used for cocktail hour, and the Crush House, a stone building covered in vines, can be utilized for multiple purposes. Stunning!
Bonus: Did we mention the Wine Cave? Well, it deserves to be mentioned twice! Imagine the fun photos you and your wedding guests can capture in this elegantly decorated stone cave.
Typical Cost: Starts at $6,250.
Capacity: Up to 200 seated guests.
San Juan Hills Golf Club – San Juan Capistrano
There are hundreds of golf courses and country clubs to choose from in Southern California but San Juan Hills Golf Club is one of our favorites with its stunning landscape and breathtaking views.
There are so many luxurious indoor and outdoor options in this fabulous venue; perfect for the golf-loving couple!
The Cascada Lawn is where many couples choose to exchange vows. Set in front of a pond and waterfall, this lush manicured lawn has the perfect lighting about an hour before sunset.
Choose from three outdoor patio options for cocktails and/or your reception. Of note, the Greenside Patio is next to the practice putting green.
Indoor options include the Green View Room with arts and craft style architecture and a wooden dance floor.
Bonus: San Juan Hills Golf Club offers several different wedding packages and menu options.
Typical Cost: Starts at $5,000.
Capacity: Up to 250 seated guests.
Khyra Beaucrest Ranch – Cherry Valley
Khyra Beaucrest Ranch is a 15-acre estate with 12 bedrooms that can sleep up to 28 people. This true weekend destination wedding venue is stunning with a heated pool, tennis courts, a fishing pond, basketball hoop, and corn hole games.
Set in the mountains between Los Angeles and Palm Springs, Khyra Beaucrest Ranch has drop-dead gorgeous scenery. Imagine saying your “I dos” under a wooden arbor with the sun setting on the foothills and mountains behind you.
This magical property is charming, rustic, and very luxurious. You even get the run of the property for two nights and three days when you rent the venue!
Bonus: We have to admit, we have a little soft spot for Khyra Beaucrest Ranch… yes, it is a gorgeous 15-acre country estate with so many amenities, but it also is a working ranch and includes horses, goats, chickens, and dogs!
Typical Cost: Starts at $11,000.
Capacity: Up to 100 seated guests.
Desert Luxe Weddings – Indio
Desert Luxe Weddings is another grand estate that can be rented for the day or the weekend. One of the highlights of the property is The Grand Vita Estate which is located on nine lush acres complete with a heated pool and you guessed it… horses!
There are several ceremony sites for both your ceremony and reception around this stunning property.
There is a man-made pond complete with a sandy beach and fire pits and an “industrial barn” with AC for a luxurious and chic reception.
To quote the owners of the venue, “It’s like Beverly Hills 90210 meets Dallas but way more fancy and we like fancy.”
Bonus: Desert Luxe Weddings offers two affordable packages. The “Stay Awhile Experience” and the “In the moment experience.”
Typical Cost: Starts at $7,000.
Capacity: Up to 300 seated guests.
The Villa Weddings and Events – Orange
The Villa Weddings and Events has been in business for three decades and has a premier wedding venue in Orange County that will truly wow your guests.
Only one wedding is booked a day and the planners pride themselves on taking care of every little detail to make your big day extra special.
Most couples have their ceremony in the elegant Reception Ballroom with its gorgeous chandeliers, chiffon drapery, twinkling lights, and tons of natural lighting with large windows.
The Private Ballroom can also host your reception with large round tables and chairs, a dance floor, and even special thrown-like oversized chairs for the happy couple.
Bonus: The Villa Weddings and Events has got throwing a killer wedding down to an art. They are more than happy to offer suggestions but ultimately want to turn your vision of your dream wedding into reality.
Typical Cost: Starts at $5,325.
Capacity: Up to 300 seated guests.
Santa Barbara Historical Museum – Santa Barbara
The Santa Barbara Historical Museum is located in the historic El Pueblo Viejo District of Santa Barbara and is a cultural landmark.
With romantic Spanish architecture and several sites to choose from on the property, this may be your spot if you plan on hosting an uber-large love fest.
The Museum Courtyard is the largest space and holds up to 450 guests. The lower Adobe Courtyard is slightly smaller and can be used as a spot for your ceremony, cocktail hour, or a more intimate reception.
The Covarrubias Adobe building was built in 1817 and is the second oldest home in Santa Barbara. No matter where you choose to hold your ceremony and reception on the grounds, every furnishing, fountain, and light fixture exudes a chic and luxurious vibe.
Bonus: Santa Barbara Historical Museum has a Penthouse that can be rented as an add-on for bridal suites and comes with a kitchenette and private balcony. This is the perfect spot for you and your wedding party to sip on champagne and snack while getting ready for your big day!
Typical Cost: Starts at $25,000.
Capacity: Up to 450 seated guests.
The Castle Green – Pasadena
If you have ever dreamed of a fairytale castle wedding then The Castle Green may be your dream come true. This historic landmark in Pasadena is the perfect setting for you and your prince or princess to tie the knot.
Dating back to 1898, this charming wedding venue was a luxury hotel complex that was converted to private residences in the 1920s.
The grounds at The Castle Green are immaculate with lush lawns and beautiful gardens with a pond. Inside the castle, there is an exquisite ballroom and several turn-of-the-century vintage salons.
When you rent The Castle Green you can be assured you will have the entire grounds to yourself since only one wedding is booked per day.
There is a preferred list of vendors, but there are no minimums on food or beverages and you can provide your own alcohol with no corkage fee.
Bonus: Imagine how fun it would be to host a Roaring 20’s Gatsby-themed wedding or channel your inner royal family in this beautiful fairytale setting.
Typical Cost: Starts at $6,500.
Capacity: Up to 200 seated guests.
La Lomita Ranch – San Luis Obispo
We saved one of the most glamorous (and expensive) venues in Southern California for last.
La Lomita Ranch is a stunning 160-acre private estate located at the gate to California’s Eden Valley coastal wine region.
With Spanish architecture and unparalleled beauty on every inch of the property, this unique luxurious wedding retreat can be rented for a party of a lifetime. Hopefully, you have some wealthy relatives who can help pitch in for the cost!
There are four main event spaces on the property:
The Pavilion is a 7,200-square-foot covered pavilion with 10 retractable panels to provide views of the lake, vineyards, and nearby mountain range.
The Terrace Lawn is 1,200-square-feet and surrounded by palm fronds and Spanish olive and eucalyptus trees.
The Oak Courtyard is 2,000-square-feet surrounding a live Grand California oak tree. With fire pits and intimate seating areas, this is the perfect place for cocktails.
The Plaza is located in the heart of the ranch at 4,800-square-feet and includes a Saltillo tile aisle, a fountain, and panoramic views.
Bonus: There are eight private luxury suites on the property for weekend guests!
Typical Cost: Starts at $75,000.
Capacity: Up to 250 seated guests.